“I feel the Indian team will have to…” Sourav Ganguly Suggests Indian Team Should Do This In The Crucial Test Matches

Sourav Ganguly, the former captain of the Indian cricket team, has recently expressed support and constructive criticism of the team’s performance. After India’s defeat to Australia in the World Test Championship Final (WTC), Ganguly acknowledged the evolving nature of cricket, where high-scoring Test matches have become a defining aspect.

However, he emphasized the importance of India scoring heavily in the first innings to excel in the format. Additionally, questions have been raised about the team’s confidence in crucial matches, with consecutive defeats in the WTC finals. Ganguly believes that belief is not lacking but hints at the impact of players’ heavy workload on their performance.

In the WTC Final, Australia set a formidable total of 469 runs in their first innings, while India managed 296 before eventually collapsing for 234 in their pursuit of 444. This defeat raised concerns about team selection, strategy, and execution in Test cricket. In his assessment, Ganguly highlighted the need for a strong performance in the first innings. He recalled the period between 2001 and 2006 when India’s batsmen consistently scored 500-600 runs in significant venues, putting pressure on the opposition. Ganguly stressed that India must strive to achieve scores of 350-400 runs in the first innings, adapting to the changing situations and wickets in modern cricket.

“Aggression is fine, but you also need performance with that. If you see the five-six years between 2001 and 2006, India’s batters scored 500-600 runs in big venues, whether it was Sydney, Brisbane, Headingley, Nottingham, Oval, Peshawar, Islamabad, or Lahore, due to which they put the opposition team under pressure,” Ganguly was quoted as saying to Star Sports.

“So I feel the Indian team will have to do that somewhere. I understand cricket has changed slightly between what it was 10 years ago and now, the situations and wickets have changed, but India will have to see that they score 350-400 runs in the first innings in Test cricket,” the cricketer-turned-commentator added further.

India’s recent defeats in knockout or title matches have prompted discussions about the team’s belief and mental fortitude. Ganguly countered that the current Indian Test team lacks belief, pointing out their strong performances in England in 2021 and Australia in 2020-21, where they won crucial matches.

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However, Ganguly acknowledged the toll of players’ heavy workload and extensive travel schedules. He suggested that the team’s belief might waver temporarily due to fatigue but expressed confidence that they can regain and maintain their mental strength, citing their past achievements.

“I don’t agree that this team does not have the belief. We played well in England in 2021, and before that, we played good cricket in Australia in 2020-21, where Rishabh Pant won the series on the last day; I feel that happens with belief only. They play so much cricket and travel a lot, so it probably goes slightly back for a short time, so they need to recoup that and bring it back, which I feel is possible,” Ganguly pointed out.

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